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2015 Chevy Sonic - traction control & ABS light ON

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New User

May 30, 2021, 6:37 AM

Post #1 of 2 (278 views)
2015 Chevy Sonic - traction control & ABS light ON Sign In

I have a 2015 Chevy Sonic. Yesterday, when I got in the car and started her up, she was shaking (not a lot) and my traction control light was on. I had to drive less than a mile so I attempted to do so. Got about a half mile down the road and the engine cuts off. I parked and opened the hood and immediately smelled a burning smell coming from the engine coil pack (I took off the cover).

She won’t start but is trying to turn over. The ABS light is on and traction control light. Burning smell coming from engine coil pack and I also learned I’m near dry on brake fluid. I just would like to know what the possibilities are and if I can do it myself.

Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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May 30, 2021, 8:02 AM

Post #2 of 2 (255 views)
Re: 2015 Chevy Sonic - traction control & ABS light ON Sign In

First off the traction control and ABS lights have nothing to do with the way the engine is running. You can have the ABS module scanned to determine why those lights are on but if it is very low on brake fluid, that could be the reason but you would have to find out where it went.

As for the engine problems, you need to do some basic "Crank, no start" testing to find out what is going on.

All "crank, no start" conditions are approached in the same way. Every engine requires certain functions to be able to run. Some of these functions rely on specific components to work and some components are part of more than one function so it is important to see the whole picture to be able to conclude anything about what may have failed. Also, these functions can ONLY be tested during the failure. Any other time and they will simply test good because the problem isn't present at the moment.
If you approach this in any other way, you are merely guessing and that only serves to replace unnecessary parts and wastes money.

Every engine requires spark, fuel and compression to run. That's what we have to look for.

These are the basics that need to be tested and will give us the info required to isolate a cause.

1) Test for spark at the plug end of the wire using a spark tester. If none found, check for power supply on the + terminal of the coil with the key on.

2) Test for injector pulse using a small bulb called a noid light. If none found, check for power supply at one side of the injector with the key on.

3) Use a fuel pressure gauge to test for correct fuel pressure, also noticing if the pressure holds when key is shut off.

4) If all of these things check good, then you would need to do a complete compression test.

Once you have determined which of these functions has dropped out,
you will know which system is having the problem.

In your case you may have high pressure, mechanical injectors so you may not be able to check that.


We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.

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